Comedian Marek Larwood has brilliantly recreated several masterpieces in just 15 minutes – in his own ‘mediocre’ style - as part of his web series, including a Pre-Raphaelite painting on display at Tullie House.

Marek Larwood uses his own paint set to recreate masterpieces throughout history in just a quarter of an hour, filming himself as he does so.  Often with hilarious results.

In the latest 'Marek;'s Mediocre Masterpieces' he tackled ‘The Rift within the Lute, 1861-1862 by Arthur Hughes (1832-1915).  This masterpiece is one of the most famous Pre-Raphaelite paintings in the Tullie House collection.

This dramatic painting shows a Pre-Raphaelite beauty laying on a riverbank with a lute and bluebells at her side. Unhappy love is the theme of the painting, and love is symbolised by music in the form of the lute.  The model in the painting is actually Hughes’ wife, Tryphena.

Having just returned from a tour to Japan, ‘The Rift within the Lute’ will be back on display when the museum reopens.  The painting will form part of a new exhibition exploring hidden stories around gender, found within many of the Pre-Raphaelite works in the Tullie House collection.

Marek Larwood, British Comedian says: 'It was a great honour to be asked to try and paint Arthur Hughes 'The Rift within the Lute' in just 15 minutes. People said it couldn't be done. I would like to reassure them that they were right.

In his painting, Arthur Hughes captured a Pre-Raphaelite beauty mourning her lost love. I captured a cross-eyed lady in a sleeping bag looking mildly concerned about the three-legged dog in the background’.

Charli Summers, Programme Manager, Tullie House says: ‘It is a true joy to have British comedian Marek on board to help us shine a light on our most prestigious Pre-Raphaelite collection. His ingenious 15-minute ‘Mediocre Masterpieces’ have been entertaining the nation since lock-down began and we look forward to having his witty and informative narrative to assist us in raising awareness of one of our most celebrated paintings’.

'Marek's Mediocre Masterpieces' will be available online from 3pm, Saturday 11 April 2020 and can be viewed via Marek’s


The Rift within the Lute, Arthur Hughes (1832–1915) is also available as a print from Art UK.